On the way to Milan we were on a train, a plane, and a bus all before 9am. But that has its advantages because we got an extra full day without having to travel. We were able to check in the Ibis Centro early and hit the ground running.
We went straight to the Duomo square where we had lunch and a glass of wine. The food was good, but it was pricey due to the location. But the view was great. The Duomo is located in the heart of Milan next to all the high fashion shopping. Lindsay had a blast window shopping and looking at all the clothes! We also got swindled by some fellas from Kenya, but we got nice bracelets out of it. Haha.
We purchased tickets to explore all of the Duomo on our website at a discounted rate! We wandered through the inside, marveling at the architecture and all the insane details. We got a headset that guided you through all of the artwork of the building. Great history tour! Our tickets included the archaeological site that stands beneath the Duomo. Old ruins dating back to 387 AD! Very cool to see! We finished our tour with a sunset walk along the roof of this incredible cathedral! The pictures don’t do it justice! We thought the inside was brilliant, but the roof is out of the world. You can see the gothic style up close and amazing views of all of Milan! Plus it’s really romantic. A must do!
From there we stumbled upon Bianco Latte for dinner. It’s off the beaten path and had some of the best homemade ravioli and desserts we have ever had! Also, much less expensive than the city center!
Day two consisted of a day trip with Zani Viaggi Tours to Lake Como, also booked through our website at a discount! Our guide walked us through the market and side streets pointing out a couple of cathedrals and buildings. Next, we took the funicular tram to the top of Lake Como and had the most magical view! We had a lovely glass of wine and then were allotted free time to explore. We went down to the market and got a sandwich with meat shaved right in front of our eyes! Delish! Our ticket also included a one hour boat ride around the lake. To say we got a 360 degree view of Lake Como is an understatement. We took so many pictures because it’s so dreamy. We can’t wait to go back in the summer time!
The next day we used our tickets to the Duomo to check out the Museum of Duomo art and sculptures. All included and good for 72 hours! Such a good deal! From there, we checked out the Sforza Castle! Italians don’t do anything small! Each wall of the castle extends 200 meters! Really amazing architecture! On the other side of the castle is Sempione Park, a great green space with a market and huge Roman archway called Arco della Pace, that we later found out is used both to refer to the gate proper and to the surrounding district, a part of the Zone 1 division, including the major avenue of Corso Sempione, from the 19th century!
We finished our time in Milan with a 6 hour spa afternoon at QC Teremilano. We got 25 minute massages, explored every type of sauna they had including a converted trolley car, sat in the hot pools outside staring at the old Roman arches, explored the earth/salt/rain/fire rooms, took a short nap in a “nest” to recharge, relaxed under a waterfall, soaked in a chromeotherapy tub, multiple steam rooms with aromatherapy salts, and all the food and wine you could want. They also give you robes, towels, and flip flops to use. A truly amazing experience and all for under $100 per person – all through our website! Highly recommended and we can’t even describe it well enough to do it justice.
Stay tuned for our next blog on the northern coast of Italy!
Enjoy the Ride,
Lindsay and Justin